October 02, 2004

Cubs choke; whine about it

The Chicago Cubs, who have gone more years without winning the championship of their sport than any other team in baseball, football, basketball, and hockey, were on the verge of grabbing a wildcard playoff spot this year. The Cubs, with their tradition of excellence, have stepped up to the plate and lost six of their last seven games.

The Cubs, famous for collapses over the past century, might have outdone their historic selves in the past week. Twice in that time, they lost games in which they were leading with two outs in the ninth inning and with two strikes on what could have been the last batter.

You'd think the real problem for Cubs manager Dusty Baker and general manager Jim Hendry would be all this losing. Instead, they seem to have focused on the "inappropriate" comments of broadcaster Steve Stone.
During Thursday's postgame interview on Fox Sports Net, Stone asked Baker about a couple of strategic moves that didn't work out in a 12-inning loss to Cincinnati that severely damaged the Cubs' playoff chances. The tone of the questioning visibly disturbed Baker, and he removed his headset before the interview was over. Immediately after Baker left the air, Stone mentioned that managers get paid big money to make such decisions, while broadcasters receive far less for giving their opinions. That's when Hendry decided Stone crossed the line.

This is not a good sign. Stone's comments may have been sharp, but they related to the job performance of Baker and the Cubs' players. Which has been very poor of late. If Baker and Hendry can't take the heat for leading their team through another monumental choke, perhaps they should be fired. The Cubs organization might do better without them and their whiny attitudes.

Steve Stone, on the other hand, might be a good role model for Baker's and Hendry's replacements. He actually gets angry when the Cubs blow it.

Posted by Carey at October 2, 2004 09:15 AM

I've always thought the Cubs should seriously consider hiring Stone as their manager. Either way, they can get rid of Dusty for all I care.

Posted by: Trent McBride at October 2, 2004 03:57 PM

Cubs. They're football, right?

Posted by: Heidi at October 2, 2004 06:10 PM

You know you want it, bitch.

Posted by: ?? at October 2, 2004 09:19 PM

I understand the argument that Dusty Baker has improved the team, but they're less likely to win it all when the manager's attitude is, "don't criticize me, please, it's just too unpleasant."

Maybe the Yankees could tolerate that kind of attitude given their successes. But the Cubs? No way; it's gotta go.

Posted by: Carey at October 2, 2004 09:24 PM

For anyone who might be interested, here's a good analysis of the Cubs' implosion: What Happened to the Cubs?

I will just take a moment to point out to y'all what team has the best record of the 2004 regular season.


Posted by: Len Cleavelin at October 4, 2004 01:03 PM